Build a Better Float Pool with Healthcare Scheduling Software
August 10, 2020
While many healthcare organizations have been using float pool scheduling for years because of its proven effectiveness, managing float pool scheduling is still far too complex and time-consuming of a process than it needs to be.
With a highly effective and functioning float pool, nurse managers can ensure there are enough staff to address patient needs, prevent overstaffing, and reduce a significant amount of money for organizations. But that all depends on how effective and functioning your float pool actually is. Unfortunately, ineffective float pools are not only time-consuming and labor intensive, but they can have the opposite effect resulting in turnover, staffing shortages, and poor outcomes which then negate any anticipated savings.
In terms of time-consumption, nurse managers often find that float pool scheduling can tie up a large portion of their work week due to manually adjusting and coordinating hundreds of schedules, therefore missing out on the key benefits that effective float pool scheduling has to offer.
When it comes to high turnover, this is typically attributed to staffing inefficiencies and clear disengagement of staff that comes from ineffective float pool scheduling, such as using spreadsheets to keep track of the schedule. With spreadsheets, you can’t match up rotational nurses with the proper units and scheduling a rotational nurse in unfamiliar units too often may cause strain because they aren’t familiar with protocols and procedures. Anytime you overload float pool nurses in unfamiliar units, you run the risk of frustration and stress, potentially leading to burnout and turnover.
To prevent burnout and turnover, implementing healthcare scheduling software can improve nurse engagement, job satisfaction, and retention in the float pool.
Here are some other ways employee scheduling software can help:
Unit-Driven Need for Float Coverage
The most efficient manner to determine the true need for float pool coverage is to have the demand on open shifts be driven by the respective units in the facility. Schedule360 allows unit administrators the ability to flag and push an open shift that cannot be filled using unit-based resources to the float pool creating a “real opening.” The float pool manager is then alerted for this opening and completes the process by clicking on the shift matching qualified and available float pool staff who are already scheduled in float pool holding shifts. This process eliminates the endless calls from the float pool manager to all units checking on needs. Fill real openings with the right employees based on qualifications through a seamless process.
Keep processes the same across units for a streamlined approach which cuts down on having to learn and remember different processes for each unit which is stressful on float nurses, leading to burnout and turnover.
While this may not be a feature many float staff have utilized in the past, allowing float pool staff to search and accept shifts online or via mobile device within their qualifications and per the rules set forth by facility or management can give them a sense of independence and control over their sometimes otherwise unpredictable schedule.
Healthcare scheduling software provides float pool staff as well as nurse managers with complete schedule transparency by giving them full access to their schedule anytime, anywhere. Schedules can be viewed remotely from any mobile device with internet access.
Instantly communicate essential information to your float pool staff via email, text, or by utilizing the message board feature.
Eliminate no shows by sending out shift reminders via text or email that remind staff of upcoming shifts. When changes to the schedule do occur, admin can send out alerts and messages to inform staff of any changes.
Time Off Requests
Before the days of scheduling software, time off requests were riddled with challenges, such as notes hand written on a piece of paper and handed to the scheduling manager. With healthcare scheduling software, time off requests can be completed online from any mobile device without the need to go into the office to turn in your handwritten request in person. Scheduling software uses a set of established rules and guidelines set by management, making it a fair and seamless process for all involved.
Float pool scheduling shouldn’t monopolize your entire work week. With the implementation of the right healthcare scheduling software by Schedule360, it won’t have to. We know your industry and we know scheduling. Contact us for a configured demo to see exactly what our software can do for you.